British Rail Class 42

So I did some digging on Wikipedia (initially quite aimlessly actually) on the relatively recent comeback of multi-engined diesel locomotives. Actually I didn't realize the popularity of multi-engined, especially twin engined diesel locomotives, back in the days until literally a couple of hours ago. It all makes sense though. When you need big power out of engines in an era where they just can't produce that much, you jam more of them in.

Not a bad looking little thing at all
This locomotive I'm writing about today is quite an oldie and is apparently closely related to a German diesel hydraulic locomotive of the same era. She's called the Class 42 and she has nothing to do with the more popular Class 43 that we all cherish.

This is one of the 2 preserved units. Interestingly they have inboard bearings like our LRC and Amfleet cars
There have been 2 batches of Class 42s, both built by British Railways Swindon Works between 1958 and 1961. They differ by engine. Earlier units had Maybach engines coupled to Mekydro hydraulic transmissions and later units had MAN. All the engine choices pump out around 1 100 horsepower. More information, including some geeky stuff about this locomotive can, of course, be found on her dedicated Wikipedia page. The Class 42 locomotives were given the nickname Warship Class, due to the fact that most locomotives in this were named after Royal Navy vessels.

Oh and when I said closely related to a German locomotive, I meant pretty much manufactured under license. Of course the footprint of the loco would have been shrunken down to fit the British loading gauge.


Andy in Germany said…
These are nice locomotives. I'm told they were very unpopular at first because of their German origins (this wasn't that long after the war) so naming them after British warships was a way to make them more 'patriotic' so people would accept them. It worked, apparently and they became extremely popular amongst railfans.

There are a few of the German locomotives still about, some are preserved and some owned by private freight operators.

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